Kyra Kyles, RedEye
2:40 PM CDT, June 30, 2011
Unless all the TV guides are totally wrong, "The Walking Dead" does not return to AMC's airwaves until the fall. How then, is the late Princess Diana sauntering up the street next to her daughter-in-law, Duchess Kate Middleton, on a current Newsweek cover?
The digitally altered image is merely the product of Newsweek editor-in-chief Tina Brown's active imagination.
And what an imagination.
Brown, a former Princess Diana biographer, wrote up a wistful slice of the iconic Royal's life had she not died in 1997 in time for the late Princess's 50th birthday on Friday. Brown's article imagines Diana living the subplot in a"Sex in the City: 3" sequel, including Botox, a third marriage and a Facebook page.
General reaction to Brown's turn as a reanimator has been disgust, meriting the editor's defensive appearance on Wednesdays "Morning Joe," and rightfully so.
Superimposing Di into 2011, complete with strategically placed wrinkles, is more appropriate for teenagers playing with Photoshop than professional journalists at a revered magazine.
Newsweek just earned itself a spot in the Controversial Cover Hall of Fame, alongside other images that also outraged the pop-o-sphere, including:
>Demi Moore, pregnant and photogenic
These days, a naked, knocked up Moore holding her breasts and bulging belly on a magazine likely would not draw a gasp, even at a church social. But back in 1991, famed photographer Annie Leibovitz made jaws drop with the image of the future Mrs. Kutcher on Vanity Fair. The notion that the cover, decried at the time, was a smart risk is evident in the legions of imitators to follow. (Hello, Mariah Carey on Life & Style and Britney Spears on Harper's Bazaar).
>OJ Simpson ... with more melanin
Most of us have played around with the shading on a photo just to see what it would look like. Few of us would take said photo and put it on the cover of Time, accompanying a very serious story. But that is exactly what happened in 1994 to a mugshot of OJ Simpson – arrested and accused of the double murder of wife Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman. The case was racially charged from the onset, and Time's skin darkening move was (and is) bone-headed and culturally obtuse.
>Miley Cyrus shocker
Vanity Fair's Leibovitz again showed her skills in scandalizing readers with a photo of pop princess Miley Cyrus. Leibovitz shot Cyrus, then 15, as a slightly dirty-looking and mostly nude waif. Cyrus and daddy dearest, Billy Ray, later condemned the results of what was deemed pedophile bait by some and media influencers, including gawker.com, clucked their tongues in collective disapproval at Leibovitz.
YOUR TURN: Cover me. Name a cover (links to images welcome) that you find controversial and tell me why. Did it anger or intrigue you? Also weigh in on whether Newsweek went too far in bringing Princess Diana back from the dead.
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